Posted by: Dan | June 21, 2007

Bush Politicizes Science (Again)

Ideologues don’t make good presidents. Fortunately, there are some populists out there who are pro-science/anti-theocracy:

Hillary Clinton: “This is just one example of how the President puts ideology before science, politics before the needs of our families, just one more example of how out of touch with reality he and his party have become. And it’s just one more example as to why we’re going to send them packing in January 2009, and return progressive leadership to the White House.”

Nancy Pelosi: “Once again, the President has ignored the will of the American people, of leading medical researchers, and of a bipartisan majority of the Congress. His cruel veto says ‘no’ to the hopes of million of families across America.

John Edwards: “President Bush had a simple choice today: direct the full force of American scientific ingenuity towards responsible, life-saving medical research or pander to a narrow segment of his political base.

Barack Obama: By vetoing funding for stem cell research once again, the President is deferring the hopes of millions of Americans who do not have the time to keep waiting for the cure that may save or extend their lives.

The Cornell Daily Sun has more thoughts on the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act and the Hope Offered through Principled and Ethical Stem Cell Research (HOPE) Act, claiming that Congress is Putting politics over progress on stem cells. All I can say is, has Mike Wacker and the Daily Sun been drinking too much spiked kookaid recently? Or just reading too much Orwellian doublespeak? Since when is it “putting politics over progress” when Congress gets it’s counsel from scientists, but “progress” when the president gets his marching orders from conservative think tanks and religious leaders???

Anyway, my comment to that nonsense:

HOPE makes no sense

Two things:

First, I’m not entirely clear why the Congressional approval rating might be low. Speaking from my perspective, I assume that it is because they caved so quickly on the Iraq spending bill; or maybe they’re just giving in too easily on a host of issues.

Second, and I think this is related, HOPE is a half-measure. It continues to permit the disposal of in vitro fertilized (IVF) embryos, and puts a limit on progress. It makes promises regarding alternative sources of stem cells that are not clear to even the top scientists studying them. And it also blurs the line on what researchers would actually be using from IVF embryos that would otherwise be destined for the trash – these are blastocysts, in the earliest stages of development, and no more than a ball of cells.

We, and Congress, should not cave to pressure from would-be theocratic ideologues, and while HOPE might provide a half measure until we are rid of the worst president in living memory, it does just what your title suggests: It puts politics over science.

And why is it that the Daily Sun seems to be going so partisan lately? Are conservatives really infiltrating Cornell’s journalism staff that much?


  1. Bush is only postponing the inevitable. States are already going forward with the research on their own anyway.

    My worry is I wonder if this country will ever recover from this moron’s Presidency, and the “infiltration” of our society by a minority of religious lunatics.


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